Wednesday evening, when the legendary travelling food&fun extravaganza Pret a Diner, opened doors to their latest London initiative, it became quite clear to everyone present – Italians do do it better! We were there to stare.
Pret a Diner is a revolutionary concept in the world of fine dining, combining the perks of a pop-up restaurant and the quality of established institutions. A favourite among the celebrity foodies, such as Brad P and Johnny D, a night at a Pret a Diner is a not to be missed experience.
Boasting a number of Michelin star chefs and hugely successful adventures in Berlin, Munich and Monaco in their curriculum, Pret a Diner’s second coming in London, following the triumphant debut at the Old Vic Tunnels, is a highly anticipated event in the restaurant industry.
With an ambitious name ‘Italians do it better’, Pret a Diner’s most recent landing spot is the Grade II listed building of 50 St James’s. Michelin-Star chef Giorgio Locatelli is heading a team of five other Italian Michelin-starred chefs, including Accursio Craparo, Cristian and Manuel Costardi, Norbert Niederkofler and Viviana Varese. Locatelli is serving a traditional Italian menu, while challenging his team to modern dishes. All culinary treats are to be washed down with cocktails made by the team of 69 Colebrook Row.
The building of 50 St James’s, formerly a home to a private member’s club, is not only transformed into a restaurant, but to a tribute of Italian taste and style with a global agenda. A selection of pieces from the recently opened Gazelli Art House greet the guests upon arrival on the ground floor, whilst the larger rooms above the majestic staircase have been turned into a rustic-meets-modern dining area, with simple wooden tables and artworks from contemporary Italian artists. As they claim themselves, this Pret a Diner is “a stroll through Italy – from the rough heights of the Alps to the endless vistas of deep blue sea. A showcase of the pure “dolce vita”: From simple fisherman’s fare to molecular cuisine. From the works of rebellious Italian street artists to the sophisticated creations of sharp-minded intellectual minds. From Italian love songs to Italian electro House DJs. No less than the final proof that “Italians do it better”. Better than “ciao bella”. Better than pasta and pizza. Better than Berlusconi. Better than machismo. Better than ever.”
The opening night saw the guests try an array of mouthwatering dishes from chef Locatelli & Co’s selection for the diner in the next month and half. With fresh plates of divine dishes arriving from the kitchen at the speed hard to keep up with (especially after the third Martini Royale cocktail), it was impossible not to agree with their logo – Italians, they indeed do it better!
PRET A DINER ‘Italians do it better’
May 9th – June 30th
50 St James’s Street, SW1A 1JT
Make reservations here